Alert:Â Iâ€™m about to badmouth a famous dead guy.
By now we all know James Brown, the Godfather of Soul, is dead.Â According to David Letterman this is significant because it means that now the hardest working man in show business is Regis Philbin.Â Iâ€™d argue Nick Cannon, but whatever.Â For black folk itâ€™s significant for too many reasons to get into, especially since this article is not in praise of one of the greatest entertainers of our time.Â You can find that kind of article anywhere.Â This is concerning his five year old son, a little boy that was left out of his 73 year old fatherâ€™s will.Â
Now we can make the excuse that itâ€™s just like black folk to be sloppy in handling their business and leave it at that, but that would be wrong, stereotypical, and as ignorant as it gets. (In this case sadly itâ€™s true.Â Â One of the most successful musicians of EVER didnâ€™t update his will after the birth of his 7th child five years ago.Â But I digress.)Â If Iâ€™m not mistaken the almost 100 year old (Iâ€™m rounding) husband of Anna Nicole Smith was a billionaire and he didnâ€™t even have a coherent plan on how to dole out his estate among his family and his then 26 year old wife, and he was as white as they come.Â So look at it for what it probably is and thatâ€™s another dad failing to protect his childâ€™s future because of his questionable feelings about his â€œbaby mama.â€
Letâ€™s briefly examine the facts (ok some of this may be rumor and innuendo).Â Tomi Raye Hynie, the mother of Mr. Brownâ€™s child, is not well liked.Â Â Â Immediately following his death she was locked out of the Brown mansion and claimed homelessness, only for us to later find out that she lived in a house around the corner.Â Â At the funeral Rev. Al Sharpton, a good friend of the Godfather, announced her by the wrong name.Â To add insult some reports are claiming that she was legally married to someone else when she â€œmarriedâ€ James Brown.Â Then it came out that she and her son were both left out of the will even though Mr. Brown was of sound enough mind to have his other six children covered.Â In a strange twist the body of the soul singer is notÂ in the ground as of this posting because it was being kept at his home for some obscure reason. Â (Could there have been DNA collection conducted to make sure the kid is his before they put him in the ground?Â Iâ€™m just speculating.)Â There have also been some serious allegations of Ms. Hynie being physically abused over the years by her cape-donning partner.Â Â Itâ€™s clear to me that there is some kind of back story that influenced Brownâ€™s decision to put off adding his young son to his will.Â
All that to say no matter how a father may feel about his babyâ€™s mother, he has to take care of his children â€“ all of them.Â This goes double for such a high-profile, rich, and historically significant person as James Brown.Â My gut tells me that he loved Ms. Hynie, but I question, based on the evidence, if he trusted her.Â I hope that the kidâ€™s siblings do right by him and share the wealth of the estate, even if itâ€™s by putting something away for him in a trust that he canâ€™t touch until heâ€™s of age.Â The child at the center of this mess didnâ€™t do anything to deserve being left without a dad or a penny to his name.
well, at least she made this “widow blog” – http://griefcase.blogspot.com/2006/12/welcome-tomi-raye-hynie-mrs-james-brown.html
with a photo of the two of them. Won’t comment on that unfortunate last name she has!
(btw i think i broke your link to my blog when i moved)
In the days after the Godfather’s death, I did see at least one report that said the paternity of this child was in question.
I saw Tomi Raye on Larry King Live a few days after the funeral debacle; she presented quite a “sob story”, she never dropped a tear, she wasn’t very believable and she basically came off as a golddigger (“who don’t mess with no broke n-word!”).
I live in Aiken County and I met Mr. Brown and trust me if he didn’t update his will after “jr.” was born there was a reason. He loved that child like his own and he would do the same for any child that resided in his home. As far as Tomi Raye is concerned she signed away all rights to anything. She was a money hungry BITCH from the start. Now she has put her son through the worst kinda HELL a child could go through, NOT KNOW WHO YOUR DADDY IS, if she had left well enough alone the other children were more than willing to set up a trust fund for him,because their father loved him. I hope Jr. grows up to be the kind of man Mr.brown would have wanted him to be despite his mother.
How sad that a small child has to be the pawn in all of this. It won’t be the first time though. It’s also a shame that Brown still isn’t buried. That whole family should be ashamed over that.